Teachers take on peak in aid of Award funds

Mr A Nicholl,  Miss J Oliver and Mr S Crothers pictured during the trek.
Mr A Nicholl, Miss J Oliver and Mr S Crothers pictured during the trek.

A team of three teachers from Ballyclare Secondary School braved the elements last week to raise funds for pupils at the school.

They took on the challenge of navigating Slieve Donard on January 20 before sleeping at the top of the mountain to raise funds for the school’s Duke of Edinburgh’s Award Programme.

Mr A Nicholl, Mr S Crothers and Miss J Oliver, battled snow storms and sub-zero temperatures during the trek.

After setting off from Bloody Bridge Car Park at 9pm on Saturday, they encountered a blanket of snow covering their steep climb, before reaching the top at 1am on Sunday.

Commenting on the ascent, they said: “We felt a huge sense of relief and accomplishment. This moment of relaxation lasted for only a few moments as a snow storm started, continuing through the night as we lay in our survival bags.

“By 4am, another 2ft of snow had fallen and we thought it best to put up our emergency tent to protect us. Emerging from our tent at 8am, it was engulfed by snow. The snow storm raged so we knew it was time to start our descent.”

They added: “We are truly grateful for all the support and encouragement we have received throughout this challenge.

“The school staff, pupils, parents, family, friends and the wider community have been an incredible support to us. We have exceeded our target of raising £800 to purchase essential equipment so that even more pupils can take part in The Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme within our school.

“We videoed the entire event and the whole experience will be live on our school’s website very soon.”

If you wish to make a donation in aid of the school’s Duke of Edinburgh’s Award programme, go to www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/dukesbssdonardbivy